For the trickle of passengers taking to the skies these days airport amenities remain near non-existent. Even as the traveler numbers slowly begin to rise from the bottom of mid-April the idea of interacting with airport vendors sits in harsh contrast to the social distancing efforts recommended by public health officials. For a company built around not just passenger volumes, but direct contact between travelers and staff this presents a spectacularly challenging environment. XpresSpa, the global in-airport spa services company, aims to mitigate the drop in massage services with a pivot to heath screening.
Dubbed XpresCheck, the company intends to offer COVID-19 screening and testing in convenient and accessible locations across its portfolio of US airports. The first testing site will launch at JFK’s Terminal 4 using a new construction modular facility. Tests are expected to commence by the end of June.
The site will host nine separate testing rooms with a capacity to administer over 500 tests per day. The Company intends to offer its services to airline employees, contractors and workers, concessionaires and their employees, TSA officers, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents.
We are thrilled to be in a position to launch our first pilot test at JFK Terminal 4 and are hopeful that this will serve as a model in other U.S. airports. The vision and close collaboration with JFKIAT senior leaders have enabled this initiative to move quickly so that we can together support the safety and health of front line airport workers and travelers as New York’s recovery plan takes form.– Doug Satzman, XpresSpa CEO
While the JFK T4 location is a start, XpresSpa hopes to expand quickly at JFK, other Port Authority-managed airports and across the country. The T4 facility will be a new construction, modular space in the terminal but other locations are investigating the potential for converting existing XpresSpa setups to an XpresCheck layout to quickly boost capacity as the offering expands.
Also of note, passengers are not a key market that XpresSpa intends to target with the services. The company is focused instead on “testing for airline employees, contractors and workers, airport concessionaires and their employees, TSA officers, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents.”
A marketing and data partnership, too
XpresCheck will also partner with HyperPointe in launching the effort. HyperPointe helped to develop the workflow process for handling the medical services, as well as promotional and educational solutions to support the launch. XpresCheck will integrate with HpyerPointe’s AdvancedMD Practice Management software for for online appointment scheduling, patient intake, lab integration, medical billing and reporting analytics.
The reporting analytics part delivers an interesting additional option for the companies. The data will not be retained solely for medical purposes, according to a statement issued announcing the deal:
[T[he robust set of blind data generated by the testing program can be used to inform COVID-19 surveillance programs and drive future measures that will help ensure the safety of U.S. borders.
Exactly how it is anonymized, who it is shared with and what it is used for is unclear. But there is additional value in that data and the companies intend to realize that wherever possible.
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